Some of you may have heard about a firearms mishap at a Riverside range a few weeks ago during a concealed carry class. Apparently the civilian instructor shot a student in the leg. This was what we consider to be a negligent incident and not an ‘accident’ as reported. Why do we characterize it as such? Because something like that should never happen and if it does, it is indeed negligence.
As many of you know, we have been training for 30 years and have never had such an occurrence. Safety is, and always should be, the number one issue. Drawing from a concealed carry position can be tricky and that’s why a student must attend Handgun I and Handgun II in order to qualify for our concealed carry class. http://internationaltactical.com/concealedcarry.html Brand new shooters should not be drawing from a concealed position and instructors have no excuse for shooting students in the leg, even if they are extremely annoying individuals.
Firearms training has become a cottage industry with weekend ‘warrior’ instructors coming out in droves! One needs to get licensed to do manicures or drive a taxi, but in order to qualify to be a firearms instructor all one needs is to pass an NRA course, buy some insurance, and find a range. Getting students to attend is another matter so you will see instructors claiming to be Special Forces, Navy Seals, SWAT and any other high speed monikers one can think of. When asked about their backgrounds, they often say they can’t “talk about it”!! Most of these claims are false and up until recently it has been extremely difficult to verify their veracity. And even if they are who they say they are, it doesn’t mean they have any qualifications to teach others or that they know what works and what doesn’t on the streets.
I have had students in my Handgun I class tell me that they have attended a basic handgun class at a school taught by one of these charlatans (who shall go unnamed) and people were just wandering around with loaded guns apparently attempting to do entries in a shoot house. Really!! And they stayed even though they felt unsafe! DO NOT STAY IN A CLASS THAT IS UNSAFE!! I know that sounds pretty sophomoric but it is surprising how many people do not want to rock the boat and will patiently wait until a class ends before rushing out in horror. Sometimes instructors even argue when students tell them they are being unsafe. We knew one guy who repeatedly told the instructor that he was uncomfortable because the instructor was covering the class with his muzzle each time he demonstrated a technique. The instructor balked at this and said that the rifle was unloaded. It later proved to be loaded, but either way, it should have been treated as such.
In case you hadn’t noticed, the lack of professionalism in these instructors is a major annoyance of mine! There is simply no excuse for a cavalier attitude in instructors and there are absolutely no shortcuts to running a safe range.